Many women of color seek chemical remedies to lighten their complexion. They have created a booming global business in bleach creams and injectables valued at US$8.6 billion in 2020; $2.3 billion was spent in the U.S. alone. The market is projected to reach $12.3 billion by 2027.
Bleach cream manufacturers now face growing pressure to address racism, with activists arguing that their products perpetuate a preference for lighter skin.
The market is projected to reach $12.3 billion by 2027
Some among African countries have moved to ban bleaching creams. The success of the blockbuster film “Black Panther” has likewise sparked a movement celebrating dark skin, with hashtags including #melaninpoppin and #blackgirlmagic.
Public education and activism on this issue must prevail to protect the health and self-esteem of women of color. The failure of either will only prolong the problem – while sustaining an $8.6 billion bleach cream beauty industry.
Extracts from a The Conversation article (original). Published 20 February 2021.